Going forward, Brigadier Gen. Michael McDaniel's goals for the BWL Community Review Team are clear
"It has to be independent, it has to be objective and it has to be transparent," he said.
As the Mayor Bernero-appointed Chairman, McDaniel, a Cooley Law School professor, is looking through all phases of the utility's emergency response. Specifically, the preparation, response and long-term recovery.
The first step is appointing the review team and McDaniel isn't looking for politicians.
"Community members, who are willing to review everything that was done, wasn't done and make recommendations of what should be done," he said.
The next phase will include public meetings, interviews with BWL employees and a look at the utility's response plan, followed by meetings with public service experts.
The plan is to have new emergency response recommendations in roughly three months.
Still recovering from a nine-day outage, Nakia Atkins likes the idea of a 'citizen-led' review team.
"If it comes from the people, that will be the best because they've experienced the troubles," she said.
The Lansing Board of Water and Light is welcoming any help. The utility began its own review this week and in a statement, J. Peter Lark said he supports reviews, both independent and by the Public Service Commission, adding, "Together, these findings and any recommended improvements will help us achieve our goal of restoring the trust and confidence of our customers and being the best utility we can be."
Lark and McDaniel have crossed paths before when they worked in the State Attorney General's office several years ago. Although McDaniel knows Lark, he says nobody will get a pass in the review.
If you wish to join the Community Review Team or have any issues you want to bring up with the team, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.